when i m 64 book

By National Research Council

  • Genre : Personality
  • Publisher :
  • ISBN : 978 0309100649
  • Year : 2006
  • Language: English

Description

Committee on Aging Frontiers in Social Psychology Personality and Adult Developmental Psychology Laura L Carstensen and Christine R Hartel Editors Board on Behavioral Cognitive and Sensory Sciences Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS 500 Fifth Street N W Washington DC 20001 NOTICE The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences the National Academy of Engineering and the Institute of Medicine The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance This study was supported by Contract No N01-0D-4-2139 between the National Academy of Sciences and the National Institutes of Health Any opinions findings conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author s and do not necessarily reflect the views of the organizations or agencies that provided support for the project Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data When I m 64 Laura L Carstensen and Christine R Hartel editors 1st ed p cm Includes bibliographical references ISBN 0-309-10064-X pbk book ISBN 0-309-65508-0 pdfs 1 Aging Psychological aspects 2 Aging Social aspects 3 Older people United States I Title When I am sixty-four II Carstensen Laura L III Hartel Christine R 1947BF724 55 A35W54 2006 155 67 dc22 2005033689 Additional copies of this report are available from National Academies Press 500 Fifth Street N W Lockbox 285 Washington DC 20055 800 624-6242 or 202 334-3313 in the Washington metropolitan area Internet http www nap edu Printed in the United States of America Copyright 2006 by the National Academy of Sciences All rights reserved Suggested citation National Research Council 2006 When I m 64 Committee on Aging Frontiers in Social Psychology Personality and Adult Developmental Psychology Laura L Carstensen and Christine R Hartel Editors Board on Behavioral Cognitive and Sensory Sciences Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education Washington DC The National Academies Press The National Academy of Sciences is a private nonprofit self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863 the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters Dr Ralph J Cicerone is president of the National Academy of Sciences The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964 under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs encourages education and research and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers Dr Wm A Wulf is president of the National Academy of Engineering The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and upon its own initiative to identify issues of medical care research and education Dr Harvey V Fineberg is president of the Institute of Medicine The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy s purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government the public and the scientific and engineering communities The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine Dr Ralph J Cicerone and Dr Wm A Wulf are chair and vice chair respectively of the National Research Council www national-academies org COMMITTEE ON AGING FRONTIERS IN SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY PERSONALITY AND ADULT DEVELOPMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY LAURA L CARSTENSEN Chair Department of Psychology Stanford University FREDDA BLANCHARD-FIELDS School of Psychology Georgia Institute of Technology MARGARET GATZ Department of Psychology University of Southern California TODD F HEATHERTON Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences Dartmouth College GEORGE LOEWENSTEIN Department of Social and Decision Sciences Carnegie Mellon University DENISE C PARK Department of Psychology University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign LAWRENCE A PERVIN Department of Psychology emeritus Rutgers University RICHARD E PETTY Department of Psychology Ohio State University ILENE C SIEGLER Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Duke University Medical Center LINDA J WAITE Department of Sociology University of Chicago KEITH E WHITFIELD Department of Behavioral Health Pennsylvania State University CHRISTINE R HARTEL Study Director TRACY G MYERS Study Director until March 2004 JESSICA G MARTINEZ Senior Program Assistant v BOARD ON BEHAVIORAL COGNITIVE AND SENSORY SCIENCES ANNE C PETERSEN Chair W K Kellogg Foundation Battle Creek MI LINDA MARIE BURTON Center for Human Development and Family Research Pennsylvania State University STEPHEN J CECI Department of Human Development Cornell University EUGENE K EMORY Department of Psychology Emory University ROCHEL GELMAN Center for Cognitive Science Rutgers University ANTHONY W JACKSON The Asia Society Los Angeles CA PETER LENNIE Center for Neural Science New York University MARCIA C LINN Graduate School of Education University of California at Berkeley ELISSA L NEWPORT Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences University of Rochester CHARLES R PLOTT Division of Humanities and Social Sciences California Institute of Technology MICHAEL L RUTTER Institute of Psychiatry University of London ARNOLD SAMEROFF Center for Human Growth and Development University of Michigan JAMES W STIGLER Department of Psychology University of California at Los Angeles JOHN A SWETS BBN Technologies Cambridge MA RICHARD F THOMPSON Neuroscience Program University of Southern California WILLIAM A YOST Office of Research and the Graduate School Loyola University Chicago CHRISTINE R HARTEL Board Director vi Contents Preface ix Executive Summary 1 PART ONE COMMITTEE REPORT 1 2 3 4 Overview The Social Side of Human Aging Motivation and Behavioral Change Socioemotional Influences on Decision Making The Challenge of Choice 5 Social Engagement and Cognition 6 Opportunities Lost The Impact of Stereotypes on Self and Others References 9 19 34 54 68 80 92 PART TWO BACKGROUND PAPERS Initiatives to Motivate Change A Review of Theory and Practice and Their Implications for Older Adults 121 Alexander J Rothman A Review of Decision-Making Processes Weighing the Risks and Benefits of Aging 145 Mara Mather vii viii CONTENTS A Social Psychological Perspective on the Stigmatization of Older Adults Jennifer A Richeson and J Nicole Shelton Measuring Psychological Mechanisms Committee on Aging Frontiers in Social Psychology Personality and Adult Developmental Psychology Measurement Aging and the Psychology of Self-Report Norbert Schwarz Optimizing Brief Assessments in Research on the Psychology of Aging A Pragmatic Approach to Self-Report Measurement Jon A Krosnick Allyson L Holbrook and Penny S Visser Utility of Brain Imaging Methods in Research on Aging Christine R Hartel and Randy L Buckner Research Infrastructure Committee on Aging Frontiers in Social Psychology Personality and Adult Developmental Psychology 174 209 219 231 240 247 APPENDIX Biographical Sketches of Committee Members and Contributors 251 INDEX 259 Preface Late in 2002 staff of the Behavioral and Social Research Program of the National Institute on Aging NIA asked the National Research Council NRC to explore research opportunities in social psychology personality and adult developmental psychology in order to assist the NIA in developing a long-term research agenda in these areas The NRC through the Board on Behavioral Cognitive and Sensory Sciences created the Committee on Aging Frontiers in Social Psychology Personality and Adult Developmental Psychology which I had the honor of chairing to undertake this task Committee members included clinical personality social and life-span developmental psychologists as well as a sociologist and an economist Some committee members hold primary expertise in aging others represent different but related fields As we educated each other about the broad range of work relevant to our charge it became clear that this was an ideal mix The committee held four meetings at which it identified a variety of possible research opportunities and considered the promise of each As the committee considered priorities it invited the input of a number of other specialists in vital research areas at a committee-sponsored workshop in September 2003 This made possible an even deeper discussion of the more promising areas of opportunity Through such consultation and private deliberation the committee arrived at consensus in giving its recommendations to the NIA The committee believes it has identified key areas of ix x PREFACE research in which additional investment may lead to an entirely new understanding about the health and well-being of older people On behalf of the committee I would like to acknowledge the contributions of a number of people who helped us to complete our work First we are grateful to Richard Suzman the sponsor of the project and associate director of the NIA He posed provocative ideas and questions to the committee and stimulated much thoughtful discussion We owe special thanks to several experts from outside the committee whose input was very valuable Prominent among these are the authors of the six papers prepared for the committee Mara Mather University of California at Santa Cruz Jennifer Richeson Northwestern University Nicole Shelton Princeton University Norbert Schwarz University of Michigan Alexander Rothman University of Minnesota Randy Buckner Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Washington University in St Louis Jon Krosnick Stanford University Allyson Holbrook University of Illinois Chicago and Penny Visser University of Chicago We also benefited considerably from the presentations and comments at our workshop of Roger Dixon University of Alberta John Darley Princeton University Annamaria Lusardi Dartmouth College Marc Freedman Civic Ventures Claude Steele Stanford University Charles Carver University of Miami Robert Wallace University of Iowa William Greenough University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Dov J Cohen University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Michael Feuerstein Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences Marjorie Bowman University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and Lisa Berkman Harvard University all of whom contributed to the committee s thinking in important ways At the NRC Christine R Hartel and Tracy G Myers served as the study directors for this project Special thanks are due to Eugenia Grohman who provided timely counsel and support as well as editing our manuscript with skill and insight to Kirsten Sampson-Snyder who managed the review process to Amy Love Collins and Susan R McCutchen who assisted with research for the report and to Jessica Gonzalez Martinez our skilled and dedicated project assistant who was both efficient and considerate I would also like to recognize the committee members for their unusually generous contributions of time and expertise and for their professionalism in completing this work They receive only the compensation of knowing that they have done their best to provide recommendations to the NIA that could advance the field in important ways This report has been reviewed in draft form by individuals chosen for their diverse perspectives and technical expertise in accordance with procedures approved by the Report Review Committee of the NRC The purpose of this independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the institution in making the published report as sound as pos- PREFACE xi sible and to ensure that the report meets institutional standards for objectivity evidence and responsiveness to the study charge The review comments and draft manuscript remain confidential to protect the integrity of the deliberative process We thank the following individuals for their participation in the review of this report Marilyn S Albert Division of Cognitive Neuroscience Johns Hopkins University Toni Antonucci Institute for Social Research Life Course Development Program University of Michigan Karlene Ball Center for Research on Applied Gerontology University of Alabama at Birmingham John T Cacioppo Department of Psychology University of Chicago Medellena Maria Glymour Department of Society Human Development and Health Harvard School of Public Health Brenda Major Department of Psychology University of California at Santa Barbara Matthew McGue Department of Psychology University of Minnesota and Phyllis Moen Department of Sociology University of Minnesota Although the reviewers listed above have provided many constructive comments and suggestions they were not asked to endorse the conclusions or recommendations nor did they see the final draft of the report before its release The review of this report was overseen by Lisa Berkman Department of Society Human Development and Health Harvard School of Public Health Appointed by the NRC she was responsible for making sure that an independent examination of this report was carried out in accordance with institutional procedures and that all reviewers comments were considered carefully Responsibility for the final content of this report however rests entirely with the authoring committee and the institution Laura L Carstensen Chair Committee on Aging Frontiers in Social Psychology Personality and Adult Developmental Psychology Executive Summary T he aging of America has become a familiar part of people s understanding of today s world This dramatic change in the nation s demography began several decades ago and will continue for many more By 2030 there will be about 70 million people in the United States who are older than 64 nearly 22 percent of the population This older population will be quite different from earlier cohorts it will be more ethnically and racially diverse with almost 26 percent comprised of ethnic minorities it will be better educated than any in history and it will be the first cohort to anticipate old age as a normative stage in life The oldest old those over 85 years of age will increase from 4 2 million to 8 9 million by 2030 The range of late-life outcomes is already dramatic and it is likely to become more so Old age is a very different experience for financially secure or well-educated people than it is for poor or uneducated people Those who are healthy experience old age very differently from those who are ill Those who are embedded in strong social networks fare much better than those who find themselves alone Culture race and ethnicity plus the accumulation of individual life experiences shape the course of people s later years Understanding individual and social behavior across the life span is key to understanding the diverse outcomes in old age It is also key to understanding how society can develop the best policies to support longer healthier lives and to have society benefit from them Whether longer life expectancies are good or bad for societies will depend on the nature of old age To the extent that people come to old age 1 2 WHEN I M 64 physically and psychologically fit and play integral roles in communities and families societies will be strengthened To the extent that older people are infirm isolated or dependent growing numbers of older people will increase the burdens on a relatively smaller younger population To the extent that older people are healthy and involved they will likely contribute far more to society than older people in previous generations To further advance understanding of how social and individual factors can improve the health and functioning of older adults the Behavior and Social Research Program at the National Institute on Aging NIA requested a study by the National Research Council The Committee on Aging Frontiers in Social Psychology Personality and Adult Developmental Psychology was formed and charged with exploring research opportunities in social personality and adult developmental psychology More specifically it was charged with identifying research opportunities that have the added benefit of drawing on recent developments in the psychological and social sciences including behavioral cognitive and social neurosciences that are related to experimental work in social psychology personality and adult developmental psychology and that also cross multiple levels of analysis The committee recommends areas of research opportunity that are characterized by recent provocative findings from psychological science findings that strongly suggest that additional work will lead to new understanding about the health and well-being of older people The committee emphasizes areas that have clear applicability to the everyday lives of the nation s older population Much of this new work will benefit from a lifespan perspective that looks not only at older people but at people who will become old in the coming decades recognizing that old age outcomes are the product of cumulative effects of behavioral and social processes that occur throughout adulthood RECOMMENDATION On the basis of the needs of the aging population and the benefits to individuals and to society that could be achieved through research the committee recommends that the National Institute on Aging concentrate its research support in social personality and life-span psychology in four substantive areas motivation and behavioral change socioemotional influences on decision making the influence of social engagement on cognition and the effects of stereotypes on self and others Advances in psychological science have brought the field to a critical juncture where with adequate support substantial advances are likely in the near future Of the social sciences psychology is especially well-equipped to isolate behavioral mechanisms and to understand how to modify them 3 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Thus a move away from the description of behavior toward an investigation of its underlying mechanisms and functions would be most productive Much of the work the committee identified will proceed most effectively in interdisciplinary teams Psychology brings to interdisciplinary research a number of sophisticated statistical and methodological approaches Infrastructure support that stimulates the incorporation of these methods into future research will be essential for the greatest progress RESEARCH TOPICS Motivation and Behavioral Change A great deal has been learned in recent years about life-styles that increase or decrease well-being in old age Information about the value of adequate nutrition exercise and preventive health care is widely available throughout the country but the dissemination of information alone is clearly insufficient to bring about widespread behavioral change Having knowledge about what to do does not ensure that people live accordingly getting people to develop and maintain healthy patterns of living involves motivation How do you get people to engage in exercises take their medications see their doctors move to assisted living or even hang up on telemarketers More broadly how do you motivate people to maintain goals that are realistic and adaptive while also modifying those goals and developing new ones in response to new challenges and opportunities such as retirement relocation loss and illness Research suggests that older people have diminished interest in novelty which impairs change initiation but it also supports that the stability of daily routines and contexts will contribute to maintaining changes once they are in place Research about motivation that addresses the activation and maintenance of behavior change could generate important insights about long-term adherence to healthy life-styles Socioemotional Influences on Decision Making The range of choices faced by Americans of all ages has changed significantly in recent years and is likely to increase Moreover decisions about many issues such as financial planning and retirement have become more complicated as have choices about health care while there is also a wider range of options for where and how to live one s later life Most current research on decision making at older ages examines the ways in which cognitive decline impairs decision making yet research also suggests that there is stability or even improvement in automatic intuitive cognitive processes For older people affective heuristics may come to play a more central role in decision making than effortful deliberative strategies Such findings have major implications on the processes involved in decision making particularly on the implications of emotional and social influences 4 WHEN I M 64 Significant topics for basic research in this field are the roles of affect risk aversion persuasion self-insight and regret in increasing or decreasing the likelihood that older adults make adaptive decisions Social Engagement and Cognition Maintaining a healthy mind is one of the central concerns of old age with profound social and economic consequences for older people and for society Recently fascinating correlational findings suggest that social relationships and social interactions may affect cognitive functioning at older ages but these findings have not been examined systematically they do not establish causal connections nor do they help to identify contributing mechanisms If there is a causal relationship it is imperative that researchers identify its properties Do high levels of social engagement lead to greater intellectual stimulation Does social engagement mediate depression which can depress cognitive abilities Do culture context and ethnicity play a role in either minimizing or magnifying the effects of social engagement for cognitive health Opportunities Lost Stereotypes of Self and by Others To the extent that false beliefs influence the ability of societies to use the resources represented in older cohorts opportunities are lost Ageism the attitudes behaviors and stereotypes targeted toward older adults because of their perceived age can affect the opportunities that individuals are afforded during the later years of life Stereotypes are not just static beliefs they have both longand short-term consequences that may function in a pernicious cycle Stereotyped beliefs about older adults can lead to differential treatment and a loss of access to opportunities Because people frequently respond to the conscious or unconscious stereotypes held by others or even by themselves stereotypes may limit the contributions that older people can make to society Aging stereotypes include both positive and negative assessments of older adulthood In some cases these beliefs may be particularly difficult to change because they contain some truths How do negative and positive stereotypes about older adults lead to differential treatment How do beliefs about aging affect identity and other aspects of self-concept How can stereotyped beliefs of aging and about older adults be changed How applicable are the theories and successful intervention strategies in changing race- and gender-based stereotypes for those associated with aging DEVELOPING A PSYCHOLOGY OF DIVERSITY Gender race socioeconomic class culture and ethnicity are factors that affect virtually all aspects of the health and functioning of older people because of their cumulative effects across the life course Recognizing this EXECUTIVE SUMMARY 5 the NIA has invested significantly in survey research on health disparities between men and women as well as among cultural racial and ethnic groups However beyond this approach there has been relatively little investment in understanding how these factors affect fundamental psychological processes and behavioral practices that are associated with aging or even whether the standard measures used in psychological research are reliable and valid across groups As the U S population becomes increasingly diverse across these dimensions the understanding of subgroups grows in importance From a scientific perspective studies of the older population also offer a unique opportunity to study the psychological and behavioral mechanisms that group membership confers and the opportunity to isolate these mechanisms such that behavioral change can occur The growing diversity of the population means that broad descriptive generalizations about behavior decisions social engagement stereotypes or any other topic will not characterize large parts of the population accurately RECOMMENDATION The committee recommends that psychological research help to further clarify whether race culture ethnicity gender and socioeconomic class are associated with fundamental psychological processes represented in each of the committee s recommended research areas The study of race culture ethnicity gender and socioeconomic class should become substantive topics in aging research The development of psychological theory in these domains will permit important questions about mechanisms to be answered RESEARCH INFRASTRUCTURE The problem-focused nature of our recommendations will require an interdisciplinary approach that focuses on multilevel factors a research program difficult to carry out with existing funding mechanisms The research needs to unite the best conceptual and empirical work in personality and developmental and social psychology with work from economics neuroscience medicine demography engineering and other fields Better research infrastructure is also needed to support and disseminate methods development Breakthroughs in thought and theory often occur after improvements in measurement techniques and methodology are made RECOMMENDATION In order to carry out the committee s proposed research program the committee recommends that the National Institute on Aging provide 6 WHEN I M 64 support for research infrastructure in psychology and methods development in aging research including interdisciplinary and multilevel approaches in order to make progress in each of the other recommended areas more likely and more rapid New funding mechanisms could encourage interdisciplinary research and build bridges to other branches of government private foundations and industry Infrastructure development could also include extended workshops and topical conferences Structural changes could also make innovative use of the review process perhaps by developing special peer review groups Part One Committee Report

Author National Research Council Isbn 978 0309100649 File size 1 2 MB Year 2006 Pages 280 Language English File format PDF Category Personality By 2030 there will be about 70 million people in the United States who are older than 64 Approximately 26 percent of these will be racial and ethnic minorities Overall the older population will be more diverse and better educated than their earlier cohorts The range of late life outcomes is very dramatic with old age being a significantly different

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